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I have just seen the new Indiana Jones one. Here are my ratings as a prose-poem-quiz
1) + or – 1 for the fear of snakes gag
2) + or – 1 for no rolling boulder of potential doom
3) I wondered how it would affect ladyfolx that Indiana’s love interest is his own age. Is this a feminist question? Yes or no?
4) Cate Blanchett– hot or not?
5) Shia LaBeouf: nice adolescent partial recognizability. Just enough to annoy in to a WhereDoIKnowHimFrom stare throughout the film. Answer: Disturbia, tv cameos, Freaks/Geeks
6) Are we just going to be killing characters in cinematic atomic action blasts from now- willy nilly?
7) Which of the following was portrayed MOST like a human:
a ) Mayans
b ) The People of Peru
c ) misc Tribal People
d ) Aliens
e ) Soviets
f ) mannequins in a fake American suburb
After I was advised that I look like an actress in the film, I rented Normal Adolescent Behavior. Rental also accommodated my recent recession into older projects: watching everything ever made about teenagers having sex. And this one was explicitly about (only according to the director, writer, actors but not, perhaps, the actual communicated narrative) women having sexual desire and pleasure. It follows a “family” of six 17-year-olds who have been together since fifth grade or something. In order to rebel against the hook-up-weekends, party girls, and blow-jobs the six only have sex with each other. Every Saturday night they just hetero-pair and then fuck in the same room. To the taunts of their classmates, the women in the family flirt and make out. One girl, attracted to a boy outside the group, struggles to get out. At first she hides her relationship and eventually she speaks out against the family.
Sean: What? You don’t live in what world? The world of first dates? Of holding hands?
Wendy: No you jackass. Of disposable girlfriends. Of bracelets for blowjobs. Of macking and making out and going down and text messaging some asshole whose gonna come all over my shirt. That world.
It was completely confusing.
Femmephane buys into some parts– maybe– in a sort of polyamory, alternative relationships type of way. But, then, how come blow-jobs and stripper poles are tools of the hegemony but tantalizing lesbian-theatrics and rigid heterosexuality are not? Eventual message seemed to be: grow up protagonist-girl and burn your past so you can have fairy-tale relationship with boy-next-door. In her damning evil-of-family rant at the end she lists: cutting, secret boy/boy homosexuality, and crabs as the pitfalls of the cult-like group.
In an effort to better understand the very particular statement of the film, I also watched the commentary where the director describes that the group is a “monogamous” group of six. (Yet more confused) One of the actors clarifies, The Point is That the Family Is Totally Different but Not Perverted Or Anything. (What?)
The film also features some really shoddy acting and I couldn’t seem to remember the difference between the three brown-haired boys. (No, MORE than usual, I promise.) The particularly stilted acting of Kelly Lynch is distracting. She is not only unbelievable as an unathletic-housewife and an extremely effeminate hot mom but is also unbelievable as a professional actor or even a human. Or maybe I just can’t see her as anyone but the L-Word Season 1 NightMare Extravaganza: Ivan.
Only after the fact did I realize that this film is supposedly a sequel to the Anne Hathaway movie Havoc. No matter how dedicated I am to my suffering and your well-being I am not willing to suffer that one in order to understand exactly how NAB is a sequel. IMBD alleges that Havoc is about ” Two affluent suburban girls who clash with the Latino gang culture of East LA.” And all trailers seem to support that synopsis. Femmephane thinks maybe the person who named NAB is confusing the term “sequel” with the genre “adolescent teenagers have sexual tension.”
Listen, whatever it is you try
to do with your life, nothing will ever dazzle you
like the dreams of your body,
longing to fly while the dead-weight bones
toss their dark mane and hurry
back into the fields of glittering fire
even the great whale,
throbs with song.
by Mary Oliver
Cambridge: It’s not the first time that a slumbering giant crept up and bit me– sleeping, luxurious, nasty.
Graduation day I wore ivory with the perfect shoes. Another graduate looked over to me angrily as we processed in to the All School Ceremony (words of Meredith Vieira + Mary Oliver gets silent Honorary Degree) from beneath a polyester widow’s peak: You’re Not Even Wearing the Hat? A very gowned group, the 1500 that left with me.
Texts from my audience— the A-dubbed “pack of queers” + sis surprise:
“Did [Meredith] really just say schizoid?”
and also of note,
“Sister loves you”
For some (obvious?) reason one of the most successful women in tele-journalism used her speech to tell us all about how the best decision in her life was when she ceded to her guilty feelings about deserting her family for her career and “went home.”
Later we were walking around and sister pointed out that she was Sick of Everyone Staring at Us. Low/Behold everyone WAS. All those queer couples and one exceptionally pregnant with imminent Leo-Queer.
Another dream: I was going to marry one of my male friends. It wasn’t clear why– just that we would never have sex, he would still be in a relationship with his girlfriend, it was going to happen. Someone from my past came up to me and she told me it was a bad idea. Everyone did. I didn’t want to and there was no reason to marry him. It’s just that I had already agreed and everything had been arranged and the wedding would be the next day. Marrying him was impossible but I couldn’t stop it. Or marrying him was impossible so I couldn’t stop it. I can’t tell which. The person in my past said she could stop it all if I wanted to but refused to kiss me.
I brought it to my shrink. Delicately and then in rage and tears hoping she could tell me more about why I am invested in the fights I’m invested in.
“You left your keys in Providence? Who is this man?”
I moved forward to take a bite and slipped again and cried on her mat. I’m Glad You’re Going to Be Here Next Year. With her. With me. I told her.
Doubtless I would produce a brood of three– each with her own porcelain appendages by puberty. “Mom.” One would explain, as she tapped demonstrably at the glass eye with a ceramic fingertip. “Hey,” i would joke carving up a thigh for dinner, “it could be worse. You’ll be immortalized in glass.”
For me it is just the shoulder gone but I can’t be sure how much of my children I would feed Demeter before the gig was up. Public schools and appointees of the court are a far cry from a celestial dinner table and more likely to, say, gouge out their eyes than cope with the cannibalized.
It’s mothers day.
I went to a baby shower yesterday. Everyone got drunk at two pm and by five there were only six of us left. We decided it had been a success, stayed until midnight and looked up “baby shower” on wikipedia to see if we had done it right when we learned there had only been one parent (of forty guests) in attendance. All of our gifts had been guesses except the beach volleyball set– that one was a sure thing.
J’s ex’s grandmother died yesterday morning. J said lots of things like– Only One in Her Family to Survive the Holocaust, Lost her Whole Family and So Made a Whole New One, and I Loved Being Part of That Family– I Miss Being Part of Her Family. I don’t find it touching– these big loving chains of women and it mystifies me that you do. The intra-continental dynasties, the orgies of juridically sanctioned, feminist-approved history, cultural celebration, obsession with the family line: surviving, thriving, loving. I’ll show you what oral transmission really means.
Perhaps I am not moved in the same way that J failed to appreciate the gravity of something else. It is the same as when JK, recently informed he has become unwelcome in his family’s homes, asked if he should fly home and stay in a hotel to visit his parents and sisters. J said: Fuck No- Why The Fuck Would You Do That. I only wept later and said– But of course he should. But I don’t want to give bad advice.
Now more than ever I know I can neither offer up that family nor promise one in the future. I am so young that she thinks, perhaps, I will grow into wanting to make a family. The party was full of people excited about the prospect of baby. Baby will love you. You will love baby.
It’s mother’s day and today I know it’s not just animals who eat their young. It is also the cursed and the clever. The sacred and profane. And the certainty doesn’t come from my experience as the victimized young.
Or maybe a curse is compelling enough to warrant life. Especially the kind of lonely life that family can never satisfy. This must be what queer means. Once everyone’s actual families come to town I am lost again.
This week, for example: mother’s day, my parents’ birthday, senior gala, my final address to women’s studies, graduation. All of these things beg guests, dates, family, and I can’t find any. The thought of doing the week alone makes me feel like I have eaten something rotten. We had planned to have a graduation party. But when my most beloved guests could not come (or failed to RSVP completely) I opted out: NC who was there for two years of the hardest stuff and always promised, my dear brother, my dear sister, Ken, Nora, and J– who can come for the ceremony and the party but nothing else.
Sure. I understand. But I don’t. Whether or not this is what family means, I don’t want one.
“You have to find some people to come on Wednesday,” my adviser reminds me as I tie up her wet hair, “everyone except for A will have family there– and a bunch of friends.” What is this private school public torture?
In anticipation of it all I remind you again: I will not become the family you or I want. I promise.
There’re still five vials of the sperm she’s saving for anyone who wants them. J suggests again and again that it be me. But Pelops would have made a lousy matriarch and even Antigone couldn’t have cared less about her own offspring.
I’d rather rent a room.
After years of aspiration and experimentation I have finally found the environment in which the alluring US Weekly is completely intelligible to me: treadmill. It’s good. I feel temporarily assimilated into an otherwise impenetrable (sorry) girl-world. You never know when you’ll have a chance to reap the benefits of your showbisdom by mentioning the new Pitt-Jolie house (therapy), talking about star “post baby bodies” (Angela), or listing all the celebrity couples with a 12-year age difference (this one actually failed).
However, since the writers’ strike ended I have found myself lost amidst all this tv coverage. These magazines are no longer talking about banal mega-celebrities like Halle, Will, and Miley, but have instead gone back to banal reality stars. I was ready for Gossip Girl. All is well with Grey’s Anatomy. And if anyone ever decides to do a piece on Hugh Laurie and Lisa Edelstein, I’m all ready. Unfortunately the coverage is going to shows I’ve never seen and they’re either ones you have to watch in order to (presumably) enjoy gossip about (American Idol) or just things that I’ve never heard of.
For a while it was okay. I could just read over the Dancing with the Stars and Next Top Model. Still, something wayward blossomed on the glossy horizon. Her name was Lauren Conrad.
I spent a couple of weeks looking at her picture and nodding along as if I knew who she was. Every time I saw her picture I just pretended that she was Christine Taylor– the actress who played Melody on that classic Nick sitcom “Hey Dude.” Please, I’m not insane. Just willful. Look:
Every time an article would mention Conrad’s age I would just hum loudly or act like the number referred to something else. All this to get out of Google-for-the-answer– or perhaps to prolong that killer-cacti song in my head. But, as you all know, you can not actually elude Google-for-the-answer. You can only postpone it. Which means that I’ve just seen three whole episode of The Hills.
I am aware of the fact that I just had to do some garbage-watching in order to make other garbage more interesting. And I’m into it. And not in a completely performative way.
Also– something else came out of this whole thing. I hate to restart blag with kernals of truth etc etc but now have to. I have found a perfect way to access unadulterated, idealistic girl-advice. This hypervisible information is actually invisible to me. It seems I don’t know the girl-maxims or the girl-morals. It’s a whole world of indoctrination that I seemingly missed. At least I, female-friendlessly, missed a lot of it. Which is good and bad but whatever it is, The Hills is the solution.
You actually get to SEE one character start dating a total asshole and her friend say generic supportive, get-rid-of-him things. You see the character’s confidence rise as she threatens the boy saying something to the effect of: since you are a rude asshole maybe we shouldn’t see each other any more. And he replies: well, we can do whatever you want, but remember that I always liked you for you and I never wanted YOU to change at all. And she actually gets weepy. And then Lauren Conrad’s all like: I love you, you are my friend, wtf though.
I have to go finish mainlining these messages about loyality and assholes. It is so overdetermined it’s almost a Greek myth.